The international community agreed to limit global warming to a maximum of two degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels by 2100 at the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris. That was six years ago – and much progress has been made during these six years. However, the efforts made to date are far from sufficient to achieve the two-degree target and reverse the trend. The coronavirus pandemic still has the world preoccupied while climate change continues unabated. Climate change is one of the greatest challenges humanity is facing.
We are currently only seeing relatively small impacts of climate change. If global warming gains momentum, the impact will be dramatic. We are already seeing changes in weather patterns all around the world: droughts, floods, heat waves. Developing countries suffer the most from these weather extremes although they have contributed the least to climate change. So the global community needs to take countermeasures quickly and decisively in every area of life.
In United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal 13, the global community agreed to take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts. On behalf of the German Federal Government, KfW is supporting its partner countries around the world in the climate-friendly transformation of their social and economic systems. KfW is aligning all of its promotional activities with the Paris Agreement and the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
KfW Development Bank's commitments to climate- and environment-related projects are on a high level for many years. In 2021 they reached more than EUR 2.7 billion. This is estimated to generate annual savings of well over 7.5 million tons of carbon dioxide equivalents in the partner countries. Commitments from 2021 are directly supporting around 12.5 million people as they combat the impacts of climate change.
Measures for climate protection, climate change adaptation and climate resilience continue to be items at the top of KfW’s agenda despite coronavirus. After the pandemic, a green recovery should be pursued, where economic and climate goals no longer contradict each other, but both contribute to sustainable stability. In future, growth always needs to be green. All economic recovery measures should take aspects of climate neutrality, resilience and sustainability into account. In this way, national economies can position themselves to be future-oriented in line with the Paris Agreement and the 2030 Agenda.